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Ebola-hit athlete bans at Youth Olympics

Sunday, August 17, 2014

GENEVA, Switzerland - Athletes from Ebola-hit countries in west Africa have been barred from competing in some sports in the Youth Olympics that open in China on Saturday.

"Athletes from affected areas will not compete in combat sports" and "it was also decided that no athletes from the region would compete in the pool," the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Chinese organisers said on Friday in a statement.

The decision, which affects two athletes in combat sports and one in pool events, was made "with regard to ensuring the safety of all those participating" in the Games taking place in the eastern Chinese city of Nanjing.

They did not reveal nationalities or names of athletes affected by the decision.

There were 25 people on the team lists of Ebola-hit Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea and Nigeria.

Sierra Leone's six-name team comprised a weightlifter, four beach volleyball players and 17-year-old swimmer Saidu Kamara. Guinea's four-name team was made up of two track and field athletes, swimmer Alhoussene Sylla and judoka Mamadama Bangoura, both 16.

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